Australia-China Joint Research Centre for In-Line Chemical and Mineral Sensing for Sustainable Mineral Processing

The future sustainability of the mining industry requires that we be smarter in our processing of minerals. The ore deposits that host the valuable minerals are becoming more difficult to process, and this results in increased energy, water, and chemical use.

This Centre will enable miners to get more value for less effort, cost, and environmental impact through the use of novel sensors that will tell the mineral and chemical content at all stages of an extraction process.

Science and Research Priorities

This Centre aligns with the priority Resources and seeks to investigate the practical challenges of:

  • Fundamental understanding of the physical state of the Australian crust, its resource endowment and recovery. 
  • Knowledge of environmental issues associated with resource extraction. 
  • Lowering the risk to sedimentary basins and marine environments due to resource extraction. 
  • Technologies to optimise yield through effective and efficient resource extraction, processing and waste management.

Economic, environmental and social benefits

  • The development of intellectual property with commercial value, in the form of sensor devices that can be incorporated into the pulp chemistry monitor of the industry partner. 
  • The potential to use more recycled process water in flotation operations, due to better control of separation variables, made possible through the deployment of the sensor systems.

Partners

Lead Australian partner: University of South Australia

Lead Chinese partner: Central South University

Other partners

  • Magotteaux Australia Pty Ltd 
  • University of Tasmania
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